作為家長的我們，誰不想擁有一個絕對正確的指南去培養自己家的孩子？ 的確，大部分的父母經常都會想看一些書是可以教他們「如何在不會搞砸的情況下教育我們的孩子」或「準確做好10樣必做的事情，就會讓孩子愛你一輩子」。可惜，育兒的學問卻是人人不同… 不同的家庭背景，不同的經歷，不同的性格，往往都有不同的結果。
Who among us hasn’t wished for a fool-proof guide to raising successful children?
Really, instead of What To Expect While You’re Expecting, someone should really write How to Raise Your Kids Without Majorly Screwing Up or alternatively, Do Exactly These 10 Things and You’ll Be a Great Parent and Your Kids Will Love You Forever. New York Times bestseller list, watch out, because here I come.
But seriously, it would be nice. There may not be one path to good parenting, but that hasn’t stopped me from wishing that I had a few concrete answers.
It’s so hard, in a way, to know if anything we are doing now will translate to raising a successful adult later, or on the flip side, if what we are doing now will actually be detrimental to our kids. We all need help as parents and now, we have a few clues from science on how to get there by taking a look at what things “successful” parents all have in common:
1. They don’t helicopter parent. 不要做直升機父母
Apparently, all that parental hovering leads to no good. Not only does it lead to stressed-out parents, which is damaging to the family unit by itself, but research has shown that it damages children long-term as well, especially academically. Children who are raised by “helicopter” parents even have higher rates of depression.
“Many members of the millennial generation grew up with helicopter parents who micromanaged their children’s lives well into adulthood,” revealed one study. “The result may be ‘the most protected and programmed children ever,’ entering college and graduate schools without the life skills necessary to succeed in the realities of an increasingly competitive and complex workplace and economy.” Ouch.
2. They have mothers who work. 有自己事業的職業媽媽
For families with daughters, it may be helpful to have a mother who models working outside of the home, at least in the sense of long-term financial stability. A study done by Harvard Business School examined the long-term effects of having a mother who worked, in some capacity over a child’s life, on the family. “It didn’t matter to us if she worked for a few months, one year, or worked 60 hours per week during your whole childhood,” lead author Kathleen L. McGinn said in a press release. “We weren’t interested in whether your mom was an intense professional, but rather whether you had a role model who showed you that women work both inside and outside the home. We wanted to see how that played out.”
The researchers found benefits to working moms — in whatever capacity — all-around. “So I think for both mothers and for fathers, working both inside and outside the home gives your kids a signal that contributions at home and at work are equally valuable, for both men and women,” McGinn concluded. “In short, it’s good for your kids.”
3. They tell their kids “no.” 跟孩子說「不」
Ever heard of a little thing called the marshmallow experiment? Yeah, I thought so. Turns out, delayed gratification has all kinds of important lessons in it and the sooner your kid learns that good things come to those who wait, the better. Children who are better at delayed gratification “developed into more cognitively and socially competent adolescents, achieving higher scholastic performance and coping better with frustration and stress,” according to research.
I mean, not always, but still, that should embolden you the next time you have to face your kid trying to grab all the toys and candy strategically placed at the checkout counter. (Why do the store managers hate us? Why?)
4. They encourage their kids to socialize. 鼓勵孩子社交
Social skills are basically the key to life-long success, reported researchers from Penn State University. “Social skills, like cooperation, listening to others, and helping classmates, held strong clues for how those children would fare two decades later. In some cases, social skills may even be better predictors of future success than academic ones,” the study’s author told PBS. It’s promising to realize that quality school programs, homeschooling groups, or heck, even getting along in a larger family could hone those necessary skills.
5. They have a good relationship with their kids. 跟孩子有良好關係
For families in single-parent households, three main factors from the parent contributed to children’s success: financial stability, teaching the child resilience in the face of adversity, and a good relationship with low conflict. And actually, these are factors that are pretty universal to successful childrearing.
6. They teach their children how to regulate their own emotions. 教孩子如何調節自我情緒
This sounds like a skill we could all use, but in an increasingly scary world, taking a look at past research that says that equipping children with the tools they need to regulate their own emotions and behavior is a helpful reminder. In fact, helping children manage their emotions — and often resulting behavior — may be one of the most important things you can do for your children.
“Failure to develop compliance in the early years of life may seriously compromise later social functioning at school and with peers. Patterson and his colleagues at the Oregon Social Learning Center have chronicled how extreme noncompliance related to coercive interactions between parents and children sets the stage for aggressive, disruptive behavior in classrooms and peer interactions, that can lead to peer rejection, academic problems, and eventually for some children, to association with deviant peers who encourage further antisocial behavior,” cautioned one study from 1986.
7. They work with their kids’ teachers. 跟孩子的老師合作
While volunteering in the classroom and being involved in school activities contribute to the academic success of your child, even more helpful may be working to develop a relationship with your child’s teacher. “Early elementary students gain more in achievement when they and their parents experience supportive relationships with teachers,” one study found.
8. They are confident. 要有自信！
This is a tough line to walk because I feel like parenting is a constant journey of humility and change, and just when we feel like we’ve got things figured out, we will need to adapt our parenting for a new stage in the game again. But one study found that surprisingly enough, “the relationship between maternal symptoms and later adolescent symptoms was found to be partially mediated by maternal parenting self-esteem.” Let’s not take this one to add to our mommy guilt, though ladies, but instead, realize that our kids need us to feel confident, no matter what parenting path we choose.
What strikes me most about this list is that it’s not all sunshine and rainbows and parents skipping merrily down a path of daises with their kids — the list of How To Help Your Child Succeed looks surprisingly like, well, real life. There is struggle and strife, and stumbling and learning, but above all, the single most important factor for helping your child succeed seems to be one that hopefully we can all practice a little bit more every day — loving our kids.
And while obviously, the definition of “success” is a term that is open for different interpretations — for instance, I count getting my kids to sleep and training them how to make coffee as “successful” parenting — but it never hurts to have a little help in the right direction.
***Original Article from CHAUNIE BRUSIE at http://www.babble.com/parenting/things-successful-parents-do/